The ocean is an extremely demanding environment that, in order to ensure the survivability and cost-effective operation of wave energy converters (WECs), requires careful attention to several design parameters. RME expects its WECs will be adopted in many offshore power markets because our design objectives are focused on features that deliver tangible benefits to our customers including:
- simplicity - fewer parts subject to wear/breakage
- modularity - fits any size power need & easy to maintain
- adaptability - adjusts to different wave climates without excessive customization
- compactness - minimizes transportation/installation/retrieval costs
RME’s WEC testing program has validated our design strategy and as a result we expect to achieve sustainable competitive advantages related to lower up-front capital cost, lower operation & maintenance costs and significant potential for profit margin expansion when our WECs are manufactured in larger numbers.
Technology Development Milestones
In January 2009, RME conducted sea trials of an early point-absorber WEC prototype pursuant to a NOAA-funded project to develop a renewable energy power supply for offshore aquaculture systems. Since then, RME has been focused on developing a near-shore, bottom-mounted hinged flap design with R&D funding provided primarily by the U.S. Department of Energy. We feel this particular design is ideal for several reasons:
- As a near-shore (shallow water) WEC technology, a much lower proportion of total project costs need to be spent on the transmission system (pipes and cables) that carries energy from the WEC(s) to shore;
- As a WEC technology that is fixed to the seabed:
- there are no mooring lines that can become entangled or entrap marine wildlife;
- the WEC(s) are not exposed to the extreme loads present at the surface during severe storms and in “full protection” mode, the flaps can be locked down flat.
Since RME’s founding in 2007 we have been developing and validating proprietary hydrodynamic modeling tools with assistance from researchers at MIT and private consultants and have conducted several rounds of scale-model tests at Alden Labs in Massachusetts and at the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Ohmsett facility in New Jersey. In addition, we have conducted two rounds of ocean trials on the Outer Banks of North Carolina with the cooperation and assistance of the University of North Carolina Coastal Studies Institute (UNC-CSI) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
RME has filed patent applications related to certain aspects of its WEC designs and expects to continue doing so as additional innovations are discovered.
RME is interested in building the value of its IP portfolio and will consider a wide range of options including licensing and acquisitions of patents and patent portfolios. Please submit written inquiries to us at our firstname.lastname@example.org communication portal.